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Decision may be near on Polanski

Swiss newspaper says extradition case will be resolved soon

Swiss officials are nearing a decision whether to extradite Roman Polanski to the U.S. to face prosecution in a 1977 sex case, according to a report in a Swiss newspaper.

A Justice Ministry spokesman said “it won’t be long” before a decision on the extradition request, the SonntagsZeitung newspaper reported Sunday.

In April, a California appeals court denied Polanski’s attempt to end the case. Polanski’s attorneys had been asking for the director to be sentenced to time served.

Swiss authorities had said at the time they had been awaiting the decision by the court on Polanski’s appeal before deciding whether to extradite the director. He is under house arrest in the luxury resort of Gstaad.

In early May, Polanski broke many months of silence to blast Swiss and U.S. authorities over attempts to extradite him to face sentencing on child sex charges.

Polanski has been held in Switzerland since being arrested in September for possible extradition for sentencing in the case. The director, who pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful sexual intercourse, spent 42 days in at a California state prison in Chino during a psychiatric evaluation, but fled the country on the eve of final sentencing by Judge Laurence J. Rittenband in 1978.

“I can no longer remain silent because the United States continues to demand my extradition more to serve me on a platter to the media of the world than to pronounce a judgment concerning which an agreement was reached 33 years ago,” Polanski said in May.

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